Tuesday, 09 October
Bridging Theory and Practice: LEARNing Landscapes
Type: Best Practices Session Topic: Content Development
3:25 PM-3:45 PM
Authors: Lynn Butler-Kisber, McGill University, Canada
Mary Stewart, LEARN, Canada
Abstract: This presentation will appeal to individuals who are interested in the question of how to balance technological efficiency with academic rigor, artfulness, inclusion, and multiple perspectives and voices. We will examine these aspects through the lenses of our experiences as editor and managing editor of an open access, peer-reviewed education journal that was founded six years ago. Specifically, we will share how and why the journal was launched and the theoretical underpinnings that guide our work. We will show with examples how we opted to use technology in effective ways, the growth and changes that have occurred since the journal’s inception, and the lessons we are learning as we move forward. We will link this discussion to the broader question of how to facilitate online educational experiences that reflect ethical and accessible social constructivist practices.
Wednesday, 10 October
Social Constructivism and Professional Development for Online Teachers
Type: Best Practices Session Topic: Research
11:55 AM-12:15 PM
Authors: Michael Canuel, LEARN Quebec, Canada
Abstract: This session will focus on the process which led to the development of LEARN’s method of teacher professional development, the online and offline techniques utilized, as well as examples of the skills acquired by the online teachers and the evolution of their virtual classroom methodology. LEARN’s professional development program employs social constructivist-based strategies and integrated principles of inquiry, collaboration, and reflection as a self-modeling means of presenting alternative learning paths for the virtual school teachers. . Modeling best educational practice as part of the professional development of online teachers who subsequently integrate this practice into their virtual classroom methodology represents an approach LEARN has embraced over the last three years and which forms part of the ongoing research in which it is involved.
Supporting Virtual Classroom Success
Type: Best Practices Session Topic: Social & Cultural Issues
11:55 AM-12:15 PM
Authors: Velvet Weems-Landingham, Kent State University, United States
Abstract: Virtual classrooms are comprised of teachers and students using technology to varying degrees to complete interdependent performance objectives across locational, temporal, and relational boundaries. Despite mounting research, the implementation of virtual class environments far supersedes efforts to understand behaviors contributing to their success. This “best practices session” proposes instructor support behaviors associated with positive online student experiences. Issues associated with success were derived from a larger qualitative, exploratory research project. A total of 177 critical incidents were gathered from 13 virtual leaders across the United States and Canada to determine issues relate to success as perceived by members/followers. Discriminate analysis revealed four such behaviors: availability, competence, empathy, and facilitative interaction. Salient examples of these issues as they relate to teacher/student exchanges are given along with design, development and implementation suggestions to help in their resolve.
Development of a Promotion Model on the Digitization of Education in K-12 —A Report on the Progress at a University-Affiliated Elementary School—
Type: Brief Paper Topic: Tools & Systems
2:10 PM-2:30 PM
Authors: Takeshi Morishita, Shinshu University, Japan
Yoshinori Higashibara, Shinshu University, Japan
Abstract: This paper is a progress report on the digitization of education in a Shinshu University-affiliated elementary school. We became a promoter and set up a promotion team, studied the trends related to the digitization of education, listened to teachers, and designed and installed network and Information and Communication Technology (ICT) hardware. In addition, we set up a project and completed the infrastructure for education using ICT for a short term of about three months. The last aim of this study is to develop a model for the digitization of education in schools. We will practice in an open class using ICT based on the network infrastructure and ICT hardware described in this paper by the end of this year.
Thursday, 11 October
Facilitating interaction and engagement of teachers in online learning networks: Lessons learned from the BCT Network
Type: Brief Paper Topic: Research
10:40 AM-11:00 AM
Authors: Gyeong Mi Heo, CEFRIO, Canada
Abstract: This paper investigates how teachers interact with each other and engage in collaborative activities in a professional learning network for elementary school teachers in Quebec and discusses lessons learned from the BCT Network regarding key features for facilitating teachers’ interaction and engagement in the online learning network.
A Blended Approach to Canadian First Nations Education: The Sunchild E-Learning Community
Type: Brief Paper Topic: Evaluation
11:55 AM-12:15 PM
Authors: Norman Vaughan, Mount Royal University, Canada
Martin Sacher, Sunchild E-Learning Community, Canada
Mavis Sacher, Sunchild E-Learning Community, Canada
Abstract: The purpose of this research study was to investigate if and how a blended approach to Canadian First Nations education could be used to foster student engagement and success. The study examined the Sunchild E-Learning Community program (2012) through the lens of the Seven Principles of Effective Teaching (Chickering & Gamson, 1999). Data was collected via an online survey, interviews, and site visits. The study participants indicated that the deliberate and intentional integration of local learning centers and mentors with online teachers, who provide synchronous tutorials through the use of a web-based learning management system and conferencing tool, was the key to academic success.